Today, 3-D graphics are everywhere, and are used in fields as diverse as architecture, video game development, industry, the animation and motion picture industry, and many other places.
If you are about to launch yourself to the amateur or professional 3D design, and you are a little lost among all the tools that exist, we recommend you to see this article where the best 3D design programs are detailed.
What is 3D design?
Of course, before talking about 3D design programs, we must immerse ourselves in this concept, which surely for many is something new, although the reality is that it has been around for a couple of decades.
The 3D design has gained much popularity in recent years due to the demand for designers and / or knowledge in the field in various areas, among which we can include some of which we mentioned at the beginning as the industry, animation, video games, architecture, etc.
List of best 3D design programs
A 3D design program has the ultimate functionality of any other design program: giving us the tools and functions needed to create some kind of graphic, only by doing it in three dimensions instead of the two dimensions we are used to we will gain a better perspective of what we are creating.
It is a very easy to use 3D design program. It runs directly on our web browser, that is, it is online, so we do not need to download it to our computer in order to use it. It is known for its simple, comfortable interface and ease of use, which makes it highly recommended for beginners in 3D modelling.
It is a well known program that for some years was among Google’s software repertoire, although it was sold in 2012. It is of course a software used in design and three-dimensional modeling and is used in different areas such as architecture, interior design, civil engineering, mechanical engineering, also in the film industry and in video game development.
It’s the new and improved version of the classic Windows Paint, this time with many new features and options. It was released in 2017 as part of the Creators Update of the Windows 10 operating system, when several applications and tools for 3D design and other functions were introduced to the platform.
It is one of the most widely used free and open source 3D design programs in the world. It also serves as a CAD modeler and as a BIM (Building Information Modeling) software with FEM (Finite Element Method) support.
This other 3D design software of the free type and of course free, being one of the most used worldwide. It is a program oriented for advanced users and/or with a lot of knowledge of the subject, and it is used at a professional level in different areas such as in movies and animated series, also to create visual effects, to create models for 3D printers, to create motion graphics, interactive 3D applications and even in video games.
Sometimes known as simply “Maya”, this software is one of the most used in the film industry when it comes to 3D graphics, being the favorite of large studios such as ILM and being behind acclaimed films from the Star Wars sagas, The Lord of the Rings, The Ice Age and the Marvel Universe of Cinema, among others.
It is a software for designing graphics of all kinds, being one of the oldest yet existing and also one of the most powerful that can be found. It is a program that runs on different operating systems and can also fulfill different roles, since you have CAD (design) functions, it can also work as CAM (manufacturing) and even as CAE (engineering software), not to mention the obvious 3D design and not to mention that you have PLM capabilities, i.e., product life cycle management.
It is a widely used software in the industrial and design sector, being used in the fields of architecture and various engineering. SolidWorks is oriented to be used in Microsoft Windows, although it is also possible to run it in Mac, however the developer does not provide any kind of official support for that instance.
Like Tinkercad, Clara.io is 3D design software based directly on the cloud, that is, we can use it through our web browser by accessing its official site. The interface is relatively simple to use although it is necessary to study it a little first if we do not have previous experience in 3D design. With Clara.io it is possible to create all kinds of three-dimensional graphics, from simple to very complex ones.
It is a 3D design tool with a quite particular focus, which is the design of photorealistic humanoids. It is a free software whose development is carried out by a community of artists, programmers and academics who share interests in the design of characters in three dimensions.
Autodesk 3ds Max
It is a well known program in the field of 3D design, and previously was called 3D Studio. Like most programs of its kind, it is oriented to the creation of three-dimensional projects of all kinds, such as 3D animations, three-dimensional models, it can also be used at the level of video games and of course to create 3D presentations.
The 3D design has grown a lot in the last 20 years thanks in part to the advances of technology, which have given us the possibility of having better computers in which to carry out this type of projects, resulting in work of a very high level that brings realism to places extremely far from what can be achieved in a two-dimensional design.
The great thing is that there is free and paid 3D design software, there are also free alternatives, many run on various operating systems and even in some cases it is possible to use them through our Internet browser directly.